Privacy & Preserving Evidence


The university is committed to protect the privacy of all individuals involved in an alleged violation of its policies, and every effort will be made to protect the privacy of all individuals involved, including bystanders, in a manner consistent with the need for thorough review of the allegations. University employees other than counselors in the C-N Counseling Center, pastoral counselors in the Campus Ministries Department and health care workers in the Wellness Center cannot guarantee strict confidentiality.

Preserving Evidence

If you have experienced sexual assault:

  • Go to a safe place.
  • Seek medical attention if you are injured. You may seek medical care at the local hospital emergency room (Tennova) or at the Safe Center in Knoxville.
  • If you would like to have evidence collected (even if you aren’t sure about pressing charges), we recommend having a sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE) examine you.
  • Tell someone you trust who can provide emotional support and help you plan for your next step.
  • Take these steps to preserve evidence: avoid bathing, douching, urinating, brushing your hair and teeth.  Place all of the clothes you were wearing in a brown paper grocery bag (not a plastic bag).
  • You may schedule an appointment with a counselor at the Carson-Newman Counseling Center or at the Sexual Assault Crisis Center of East Tennessee. Both services are free and confidential.
  • Choose how to proceed.  You have options and are encouraged to contact the Title IX Coordinator to discuss your options.  You may 1) do nothing until you are ready to proceed; 2) pursue resolution through the University’s Title IX Grievance Procedures; and/or 3) initiate criminal proceedings with law enforcement.